My name is Maura Meeder. I am a Teachers' Assistant in the Penn Foster High School Program. From a young age I was interested in becoming a teacher. I enjoyed being a student and was influenced by many amazing teachers, including my father. My father was not only a great teacher, but he was also my high school English teacher! It was a difficult year but, luckily, I survived!
Equal to my passion for education is my love for music. After graduating from high school, I attended Immaculata University where I earned a bachelor's degree in music and elementary education. Shortly after graduation, I moved to the Pittsburgh area where I met and married my husband, Josh. There I had the invaluable opportunity to work with a diverse population of students as a substitute for the Pittsburgh Public School District and as a pre-school teacher in Chester, West Virginia. I also pursued my love of music, singing in the Mendelssohn Choir with the Pittsburgh Symphony for 2 years until the birth of my daughter, Laney. I returned to singing a few years later as a member of the Henry Mancini Community Jazz Ensemble.
After 10 years in the Pittsburgh area, my family and I have come back to the Scranton area and are enjoying the company of family and friends we were long missing. I am grateful to have the present opportunity to work with an entirely new dynamic of students here at Penn Foster. It is amazing to witness students making their dreams come true and so rewarding to be a part of their journeys.
What is one piece of advice you'd like to give students?
Nothing worth having ever comes easily, but the sense of accomplishment you will feel when you have achieved your goal will be even more intensified because of the hard work you put in and the sacrifices you make. You will gain the confidence to know beyond a doubt that you can achieve ANYTHING you put your mind to.
What are some of your passions?
My daughter, Laney, is my greatest treasure. My number one passion is being the best mother I can be for her. I am also passionate about music and have enjoyed singing in the company of many great musicians including the Mendelssohn Choir, The Pittsburgh Symphony, and the Henry Mancini Community Jazz Ensemble. I have always had a passion for education as well, and have had the opportunity to work with students of all ages during my years as a substitute teacher in the Pittsburgh Public School District, a preschool teacher in West Virginia and now a teachers' assistant with Penn Foster High School.
What is your most memorable experience as a student?
I have so many memorable experiences as a student that it is hard to choose only one. I must mention a substitute teacher that I was lucky to have in second grade who had a lasting impression on me and influenced my desire to be a teacher. I most loved her way of making all of her students feel special and important. We wanted to know everything about her and, upon invitation, even attended her wedding ceremony! In high school, I had a Spanish teacher who encouraged me to sing my first solo on stage and believed so much in my potential that he financially supported my education in vocal studies for one year! I probably would not have ever considered studying music if it wasn't for that very large act of kindness!
What are some of your personal or professional goals?
I would like to earn my masters degree, although I am not certain what direction I will take with it. I would also like to learn to play an instrument well.
What is your greatest strength?
I have been told I am a great listener.